With a combination of 10 primary and comprehensive stroke centers in our network, HCA Houston Healthcare has more stroke centers than any other healthcare system in Houston.

This means we offer the infrastructure, imaging capabilities and expertise to support some of the highest level of stroke care, including leading surgical techniques and endovascular (minimally invasive) procedures. In addition, we are highly committed to reducing door-to-needle (DTN) times and being on the forefront of leading-edge breakthroughs in stroke treatment, such as mechanical thrombectomy.

When experiencing a medical emergency such as a stroke every minute matters. From Cleveland to Clear Lake, HCA Houston Healthcare offers over 20 sites for emergency care across the Greater Houston area. In addition to our hospital based emergency rooms, our HCA Houston ER 24/7 freestanding emergency rooms are located throughout the communities we serve and provide direct admission by ambulance to an HCA Houston Healthcare affiliated hospital or other hospital of your choice.

HCA Houston stroke care

Rapid treatment is critical to decrease the chances of long-term disability or death. From emergency surgery to rehab, we are proud to provide our communities with convenient, fast and lifesaving stroke care close to home.

Stroke signs

If left untreated or not treated soon enough, strokes can lead to life-long physical, motor or mental impairment, and even loss of life.

If you notice someone is displaying signs and symptoms of stroke, we encourage you to remember B.E. F.A.S.T. to save a life and reduce long-term health complications.

  • Balance: Has the person experienced a sudden loss of balance or trouble walking?
  • Eyes: Has the person experienced vision problems or loss?
  • Face: Does the person’s face droop when they smile?
  • Arms: When you ask the person to lift their arms, does one arm drift down?
  • Speech: Does the person sound confused when speaking and are they unable to repeat simple sentences?
  • Time: If the person shows any of these stroke symptoms, call 911.

Other stroke symptoms include:

  • Severe headache
  • Temporary memory problems
  • Sudden onset of confusion
  • Numbness or weakness on one side of the body
  • Vertigo or dizziness

Types of stroke

A stroke occurs when blood flow to any part of the brain is blocked. When blood flow is cut off, oxygen is not carried to the brain cells and brain cells begin to die. Brain cells continue to die until the blockage is repaired. Stroke must be treated rapidly to reduce the risk of long-term effects and disabilities.

  • Ischemic strokes — occur when an artery is blocked by a blood clot. Fat, cholesterol and other substances build up in the body over time, which makes it difficult for blood to flow properly to the brain.
  • Hemorrhagic strokes — occur when a blood vessel in the brain weakens and bursts, this allows blood to leak into the brain. The most common cause of a hemorrhagic stroke is hypertension.
  • Transient ischemic attack (TIA) — are a type of mini stroke. TIAs are caused by a temporary clot. This means blood flow was cut off temporarily by a clot, but was restored.

Stroke treatment and recovery

The earlier the medical intervention the better the outcome, which is why HCA Houston is dedicated to providing care as quickly as possible. 

Treatment options for stroke patients are based on the type of stroke they’re experiencing.

Ischemic strokes may be treated with IV medication such as recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) or endovascular procedures like mechanical thrombectomy. Hemorrhagic strokes may be treated through surgical procedures to remove the blood and relieve pressure on the brain or to repair blood vessel problems.

Many patients require rehabilitation as part of their recovery from stroke. Stroke rehabilitation helps patients relearn skills and movements that may have been lost due to stroke. If the stroke causes a patient to have a long-term disability, rehabilitation helps the patient learn to live with that disability.

Our compassionate physical, speech and occupational therapists work with each patient to create a customized therapy regimen geared towards the patient’s long-term health.